Monday, October 20, 2014

Common Core standards have Hawaii educators on edge, no federal relief for storm damage, targeting Kahoolawe, bloated voter rolls, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

courtesy Hawaii Department of Education
Hawaii public school, courtesy Hawaii Department of Education
After three years of preparation, the state Department of Education rolled out Common Core at public schools statewide last school year, a more rigorous set of standards in English language arts and math intended to better prepare students for college and the workforce. Star-Advertiser.

This year, more than ever, teachers are feeling the pressure of high-stakes testing. Teachers are expected to prepare their students using the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), a new set of rigorous learning standards to guide their lessons for the year. Civil Beat.

Hawaii’s infamously low voter turnout may not be quite as bad as it seems. That’s because thousands of people who are still on the registered voter list have moved, gone to prison or died since the last election, lowering the overall turnout percentages published by the state Office of Elections in any given year. Heading into the Nov. 4 general election, the state has identified 626,431 people as “active” on its master list of 706,890 registered voters. Civil Beat.

Private islands, super-yachts and Marine Protected Areas How Marine Protected Areas have given rise to a surge of profit-seeking Eco-tourism investments. Hawaii Independent.

Renewable energy technologies are highly favored with 97 percent of the public supporting increased development of at least some forms of renewable energy in Hawaii, according to a new report by the University of Hawaii Center on the Family. Pacific Business News.

Oahu

Nanakuli residents will get a chance to air their concerns this week on a proposal to dispose of a large cache of fireworks — remnants of the fatal 2011 Wai­kele storage bunker explosion — by shooting them off at a property in their neighborhood. Star-Advertiser.

Oahu residents may see lower prices from Hawaii Gas if the utility's request to bring in more liquefied natural gas is approved. Hawaii Gas filed an application with the Public Utilities Commission on Thursday seeking to import more LNG. Star-Advertiser.

Opinion: Too Many Forums for Gubernatorial Candidates? There have been some two dozen debates or forums since late August. But do they really help voters make up their minds? Civil Beat.

City Environmental Services officials say 5,000 gallons of waste water spilled into Honolulu Harbor Sunday afternoon. One of the primary clarifier tanks could not handle the water surge from the storm, officials said. KITV4.

Hawaii businessman Jay Shidler, who on Friday quadrupled his gift to the University of Hawaii business school that bears his name to a total of $100 million, told Pacific Business News that he started thinking about making this big move about four years ago.

Hawaii

Hawaii County officials announced an appeal for federal relief funding for damages wrought by Tropical Storm Iselle was denied. The Oct. 7 appeal was submitted in response to an Aug. 28 decision by President Barack Obama to not declare a major disaster in the wake of Tropical Storm Iselle. Tribune-Herald.

Maui

Although he performed before a crowd of 20,000 a few nights ago, rock 'n' roll superstar Steven Tyler admitted to a touch of nerves as he addressed 11 Maui Drug Court graduates and their families Thursday afternoon in Circuit Court. Maui News.

Newcomer taking on incumbent mayor. 2014 Election: Tamara Paltin has experience running a grass-roots campaign. Maui News.

Maui boy Lui Hokoana was approved by the University of Hawaii Board of Regents on Thursday afternoon to be the next chancellor at UH-Maui College. Maui News.

Kauai

One person who did have a role in the Pflueger dam breach, but has received little publicity, has walked away without consequences. MaryAnn Kusaka was the mayor of Kauai in 1997, the year Pflueger allegedly illegally graded around his dam and reservoir and covered the spillway. Hawaii Reporter.

A former police officer and DLNR enforcement manager has been indicted on 30 counts of sexual assault. Tarey William Kahana Low, 53, of Kapaa, was arrested on Oct. 10 and charged with 26 counts of first-degree sexual assault, forcible rape and four counts of third-degree sexual assault. Garden Island.

Kahoolawe

Promised Land: Will Kahoolawe Ever Be Saved? FIRST OF THREE PARTS: The state agency tasked with restoring the island for Native Hawaiian cultural uses is running out of money, and the Navy left unfinished the job of removing unexploded ordnance from the former bombing range. But the volunteers keep coming, at least for now. Civil Beat.